Ranger Exes Memorial-TX - Ranger schools Rampagers

Ranger banner Ranger's old "Rampagers" - that was the RHS team monicker up until 1924 when the new and now-popular "Bulldogs" name was adopted by the proud Maroon & White - waged their schoolboy grid wars on the cleat-scarred turf of old Nitro Park. That gridiron served as the RHSers' home battleground up until 1925. As football's popularity rapidly increased here during the mid-20s, the problem of accommodating the swelling spectator crowds became one of major concern to school officials. The terrain of Nitro Park was unsuitable for the erection of bleachers to provide adequate seating. In addition, a sodded field also was impossible in that location. So a committee of Ranger business men was organized to tackle -and solve-the perplexing problem of a playing site. Some of the members of the committee were S.A. Lillard, R.F. Holloway and O.G. Lanier. And so finally came into being old Lillard field - now modern Bulldog Stadium, home of the 1953 State Champion Ranger High Bulldogs. Mr. Lillard, after whom the new city gridiron was named, passed away in 1927. One of Ranger's greatest all-around athletes, Buster Mills, now a major league baseball coach with the Cincinnati Reds, kicked the first pigskin to be booted on the new playing field. The 1922 Ranger High Rampagers didn't just tangle with tough high school opponents. They took on college grid juggernauts, too. Simmons College, Abilene, was unable to score on the out- weighed and out-classed fighting RHSers, lost 3 to 0. Mighty Cisco Christian failed, too. The '22ers racked up three other victories during the season. The sternest test of the year was against the highly-touted Abilene Eagles, one of the state's top teams and unscored on until they dueled with the underdog Rampagers. But the Eagles were too much for the Rangerites to handle, rolled over the RHS crew by a top-heavy 40-3 count. Season record for 1922: Ranger 6, Cisco Christian College 0; Ranger 63, Desdemona 0; Ranger 3, Simmons College 0; Ranger 6, Coleman 0; Ranger 7, Eastland 0; Ranger 13, Stamford 0; Ranger 3, Abilene 40; Ranger 0, Strawn 13. Season record for 1923: Ranger 6, Strawn 14; Ranger 25, Roscoe 0; Ranger 7, Breckenridge 6; Ranger 25, Eastland 0; Ranger 3, Comanche 2; Ranger 0, Cisco 6; Ranger 7, Big Spring 12; Ranger 0, Stdrawn 23. Article by Ethel Brookes Gilmore and Grover Lee in the Ranger Times.